In this paper I present a cladistic evolutionary hypothesis for 83 taxa of Conophytum, a genus of leaf-succulent xerophytes endemic to South Africa and Namibia. My analysis is based primarily upon anatomical and micromorphological characters. The genus as a whole, and some of its traditional sections such as Ophthalmophyllum and Pellucida, is shown to be monophyletic, with bootstrap support, though many other branches are not well supported. Within Conophytum, nocturnal flowering and the embedded window-plant life form appear to have originated several times in separate lines of evolution. The most basally-diverging lineages in the genus are native to the Richtersveld in northern Namaqualand, suggesting an origin in that area. A trend towards the loss of anatomical adaptations to drought, such as sunken stomata, and the gain of adaptations in gross morphology, such as growth embedded in soil, is evident in many of the more recently derived lineages.
You have requested a machine translation of selected content from our databases. This functionality is provided solely for your convenience and is in no way intended to replace human translation. Neither BioOne nor the owners and publishers of the content make, and they explicitly disclaim, any express or implied representations or warranties of any kind, including, without limitation, representations and warranties as to the functionality of the translation feature or the accuracy or completeness of the translations.
Translations are not retained in our system. Your use of this feature and the translations is subject to all use restrictions contained in the Terms and Conditions of Use of the BioOne website.
Vol. 2005 • No. 11